Friday, November 28, 2008

Once I arrived in Paris, I met up with my friends, Jeff and Amanda. Amanda was excited to get out and see the town. After a quick shower and change of clothes, I was ready to see Paris for the first time, too.

Amanda and I had the most fabulous day! We rode the metro into Paris and then just started walking. We saw most of the major highlights today: Arc de Triomphe, Notre Dame, the Eiffel Tower, the Louvre and a lot more that is a bit hazy since I'm running on about 3 hours of in flight sleep. We had the perfect Paris lunch in a little bistro. The highlight was the hot chocolate.

Amanda did a fantastic job of navigating the city. We only got a little lost for a minute on a street full of "Sex Shops".

One of three rose windows on Notre Dame.

Me in front of Notre Dame in my pink coat and grey hat that I will probably be wearing in every picture from this trip because it's only about 35 degrees this weekend.

The Eiffel Tower was so impressive. Before seeing it in person, I had always wondered what the big deal was and why people have such an emotional tie to it. But after spending some time there, it makes sense. It's a magical place.

We definitely did not do justice to the Louvre, but in an hour, we saw Amanda's three Must Sees: The Mona Lisa, the Venus de Milo and the Winged Victory. One of the most stunning things was seeing the glass pyramid lit up with the historic Louvre in the background.

Se la vie!

There's an old adage that says something like the best things in life are the hardest to comeby. Maybe it isn't an old adage, but if it isn't, it should be!

A few weeks ago, I planned a trip to Paris on a whim. Yes, probably crazy, but it sounded fun and I've never been. So with a few emails and phone calls, I had three other friends reeled in and Thanksgiving in Paris was booked. It all sounded fantastic, and -- in theory-- should have gone like clockwork. The plan was for Tiffany and I to leave Wednesday afternoon on the direct flight from Salt Lake to Paris. That was such a fantastic plan. Until it unraveled.

It was smooth sailing for Tiffany and I on Wednesday afternoon. We made it to the airport on time. There was no security line to slow us down. We found fabulous reading materials and candy in the bookshop. And, when we were seated on the plane, they gave us cute little Delta eyemasks for the long, overnight flight.

We settled in to our seats and waited for the plane to head out for the runway ... and we waited ... and we waited ... and we waited somemore. After two hours, Delta made it official. Our flight was cancelled because of a "broken alternative power source" (I have no idea what it does, but it sounds important, so I guess I'm glad they figured it out before we were over the Atlantic).

So, the long and the short of it ... instead of leaving for Paris Wednesday, arriving Thursday and then leaving for home Monday, I ended up leaving for Paris Thursday and arriving in the wee hours of Friday morning. Without Tiffany. Yup, Tiffany decided the abbreviated trip just wasn't worth the stress, so I came on my own.

Luckily my flights (that is plural -- so much for direct from SLC to Paris) went smoothly and I navigated public transportation all the way to the hotel on my own without incedent. At least without any incedents that I will admit to.

More to come on my Paris adventure ...